Guus Hiddink may not be at Chelsea for the foreseeable future, but he is still staying in the loop with regards to player contract talks, as he proved in his most recent press conference.
Reports in Tuesday's newspapers suggested that Branislav Ivanovic had extended his contract with the Blues until 2017. His current deal is due to expire at the end of the season and he is currently eligible to discuss a pre-contract with foreign clubs.
Hiddink denied that Ivanovic has signed the one-year extension on offer, but confirmed the club was currently negotiating a deal. To add to the good news, it was also confirmed that Ruben Loftus-Cheek was in talks.
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Asked about the pair's future, he responded: "I am aware in the sense that the club is talking to players about new deals but I don't have any announcements. I am just focusing on the technical part of the short-term future."
It will come as good news for Chelsea fans, who have been led to believe that the future of both Ivanovic and Loftus-Cheek is in some doubt.
Ivanovic to Italy?
Ivanovic was reportedly ready to hold Stamford Bridge officials to ransom and demand a two-year contract instead of one. Club policy dictates that players over 30 can only be given one-year extensions, but Ivanovic wanted an exception made.
Several clubs in Serie A appeared willing to offer him such a deal, but it now looks like the veteran Serbian is happy enough with life in London and is prepared to sign a 12-month deal.
Loftus-Cheek's current deal is due to expire in 2017 and there was a genuine fear from Chelsea coaches that a lack of first-team football would convince him to reject any offer of an extension.
The Telegraph reported in November that Manchester United and Manchester City were ready to guarantee the 19-year-old a first-team role if he agreed to join them when his contract expired.
However, that was back when Jose Mourinho was in charge. So much has changed since then and the England youth international is now enjoying a fairly prominent role in the first-team. In fact, he even grabbed his first senior goal for the club last weekend, scoring against Scunthorpe in an FA Cup third round clash.